Top Gun Super Hornet fighter jet worth £48m blown off US carrier into sea

An F/A-18 Super Hornet fighter jet – the same plane Tom Cruise and Miles Teller master in the latest Top Gun film – has been blown off a US aircraft carrier.

The US Navy announced in a statement that "unexpected heavy weather" caused the plane to fall off USS Harry S Truman and into the Mediterranean Sea on Friday (July 8) as the ship was conducting an at-sea resupply.

The resupply was "safely terminated through established procedures".

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They said that one sailor suffered "minor injuries" while conducting operations in the weather, adding: "The sailor is in stable condition and expected to make a full recovery.

"All personnel aboard the ship are accounted for."

The statement also confirmed: "USS Harry S Truman and embarked aircraft remain full mission capable."

An investigation has now been launched into the expensive loss.

Navy planes have been known to crash into the sea when either taking off or landing, but losing a plane due to weather conditions is rare given that there is a procedure to tie them down with chains when choppy conditions take hold.

According to, the aircraft carrier would have had several aerographer's mates – sailors analysing weather conditions – onboard.

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A spokesman for the sea service said that the Navy is now considering whether to salvage the Super Hornet from out of the Mediterranean.

According to Aerocorner, a single Super Hornet costs between $29m to $57m (£24.5m to £48.1m).

The US Navy does have the capabilities to drag lost aircraft from the depths. In March, an F-35C Lightning II fighter that sunk in the South China Sea was recovered from 12,000ft.

The Mediterranean Sea only has an average depth of around 4,900ft.


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